The Seat Leon ST is the estate version of the Leon, so as you’d expect, there’s plenty of luggage room (587 litres with the seats up, 1470 litres with them down). Our practicality testers found space for every last bit of our typical load holiday luggage, including awkwardly shaped items like the Aquaroll.
The 1.6-litre diesel engine promises good economy (74.3mpg on the combined cycle) and low emissions (99g/km of carbon dioxide), but still has enough poke to pull a caravan up to speed. We recorded a steady but respectable 30-60mph time of 20.8 seconds. That’s a lot slower than the petrol Leon SC, though, and the ST’s diesel engine was considerably noisier.
In a straight line the ST proved stable enough, needing only slight steering corrections to counter crosswinds. The lane-change test saw the back of the car pulled around slightly by the van, but even so it was more composed than most small cars.
A very firm and definite pull on the handbrake was needed to stop car and caravan rolling backwards on the 1-in-6 test hill, and the clutch needed a lot of slipping to reverse uphill.
The Leon is keenly priced. This is a lot of car for less than £20,000.